I called in a refill to Walgreens today for my methotrexate medication and when I went to pick it up the tech told me this medication was unavailable at this time. My heart sank in my chest as panic set in, mini heart attack #1. A million questions started flooding through my small, yet smart, brain. I didn't even know what to say to her I went speechless. When I pulled myself together I asked her if they would be getting more and according to her the computer has no date for delivery. Mini heart attack #2.
I had this once before about a year ago when I was unable to get the injectable form of this medication so I was forced to go back to the pill form. The pill form is not as well absorbed in the body like the injectable and you can only take a certain amount of the dose because if you take more your body will not absorb it, if that makes any sense. It took three months after stopping the injections and returning to the pills before any major symptoms reared their ugly head. I struggled but made it through that rough patch only to finally find the injectable form at Walgreens last March. I still remember the day. Rich went to the doctor with me and said, "I will drive anywhere I have to to get this for you," as he witnessed first hand how I was suffering. We ended up finding the medication at Plainfield Walgreens and we kissed the meds when we got back in the car. That evening I give myself the shots and I felt almost instant relief by the next day. It has been almost five months now that I have been back on the injectable form and I can say the past month I am finally back to some kind of normalcy with a few bad days mixed in here and there. I am sure you can understand why the pharmacy visit today would send me into a few mini heart attack. I feel the panic of what will happen if I can't find this medication just by writing this.
I did do something that I normally would not do. I refilled all the monthly prescriptions to the day. I have a few bottles extra so my panic is not in full blown mode yet. If I were on my last bottle I would be a real mess. I am just going to pray that the medication becomes available within the next few months and I do not have to go back to the pill form. Just writing that made my heart race. Today I will inject and have a good week. I am also very happy I have enough medication to get me through Steph and Vinnie's wedding, after that I can take whatever comes my way.
This is another side of chronic illness many people do not think of. Yes, you live with your symptoms. Yes, people look at you differently. Yes, you live different than the world and most people know these things, at least the people who care about you, but then there is the other side of what you as the patient have to endure. The medications you must keep track of. The refills, just when you think you have them all taken care of another one is ready to be refilled. Then there is the added stress like this of what if the your medication is discontinued or unavailable? What do you do? There are many different medications for many different illnesses but this one, methotrexate, is in a class all by itself. It isn't like a high blood pressure med where there are many you can try, there is one methotrexate. It makes it frightening to think about what will happen to many people, not just myself, if this medication is taken away for good. I live in fear not only for myself but for all those who depend on this drug for their relief of symptoms.
Like always I will push on. I will cherish the little bit of medication I do have left and I will pray more becomes available soon. If not I, along with many others, will deal with it. What other choice do we have? Well, besides having those mini heart attacks and panic attacks, we continue to push on and do the best we can with what we have.